2015 VOLKSWAGEN GOLF GTI WINS CARS.COM/USA TODAY/MOTORWEEK CHEAP SPEED CHALLENGE

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Volkswagen GTI outperforms seven other contenders in contest to determine the car with the best performance for the price

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Herndon, VA — Just one month after arriving in U.S. dealerships, the all-new 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI has been named winner of Cars.com’s first-ever “Cheap Speed Challenge.” The challenge focused on compact coupes, sedans and hatchbacks that cost less than $30,000 and are equipped with features popular among drivers seeking performance in a new car. The 2015 Golf GTI beat out seven contenders in the “Challenge”.

“Not only does the all-new 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI offer the best performance bang for the buck, it is also one of the most comfortable,” said Joe Wiesenfelder, Executive Editor at Cars.com. “The GTI outperformed most cars in just about every test we conducted. Also, unlike some of the other Cheap Speed competitors, the GTI offers an impressively roomy and high-quality interior in addition to being seriously fun-to-drive.”

“We are thrilled that the Golf GTI has been recognized by such expert media as a high-performing vehicle that offers an incredible value, and we thank the voters for their choice,” said Joerg Sommer, Vice President, Product Marketing, Volkswagen of America. “The Golf GTI is an iconic vehicle for Volkswagen, and we are extremely proud that is already earning accolades and admiration in the U.S. market.”

Experts from Cars.com, USA Today, and MotorWeek, as well as an actual car shopper in the market for an affordable performance car, tested the eight contenders over a five-day period. Additional performance-focused testing was done on a racetrack.

Tests included:

  • Zero-to-60-mph times and quarter-mile times and speeds
  • 60 mph to zero braking distances
  • Professional road course testing on a closed track
  • 200 miles of driving on varying roads to test each car for real-world fuel economy
  • Round-robin driving where each expert evaluated each car on the same street route, back-to-back, to gather overall impressions on drive, features and comfort

The 2015 Golf GTI went on sale in the United States in June 2014, and has enjoyed healthy sales, delivering 1,927 units for the month—the best since March 2006.

The Golf GTI features a highly sophisticated EA888 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® engine that makes 210 horsepower and a healthy 258 pound-feet of torque, figures that are 10 hp and 51 lb-ft higher than in the previous-generation GTI model. When equipped with the optional Driver Assistance Package, the Golf GTI has also earned the coveted 2014 TOP SAFETY PICK+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

About Volkswagen of America, Inc.

Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc., an operating unit of Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWoA) is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. VWoA’s operations in the United States include research and development, parts and vehicle processing, parts distribution centers, sales, marketing and service offices, financial service centers, and its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Volkswagen Group is one of the world's largest producers of passenger cars and Europe's largest automaker. VWoA sells the Beetle, Beetle Convertible, CC, Eos, Golf, GTI, Jetta, Jetta SportWagen, Passat, Tiguan, and Touareg vehicles through approximately 644 independent U.S. dealers.

“TSI”, “VW”, “Volkswagen”, all model names and the Volkswagen logo are registered trademarks of Volkswagen AG.

Driver Assistance Package available only on Golf GTI models built after July 28, 2014, and includes Forward Collision Warning. "Top Safety Pick+" based on good ratings in the moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, head restraint and small overlap front tests; and a basic rating for front crash prevention.

About Cars.com

Cars.com is an award-recognized online destination for car shoppers that offers information from experts and consumers to help buyers formulate opinions on what to buy, where to buy and how much to pay for a car. Cars.com offers thousands of new and used vehicle listings, expert and consumer reviews, side-by-side comparison and build and price tools, photo galleries, videos, unbiased editorial content and many other resources. As the 2013 “Highest Ranked Third-Party Automotive Mobile Site” by J.D. Power, Cars.com puts millions of car buyers in control of their shopping process with the information they need to make stress-free buying decisions. Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including A.H. Belo (NYSE: AHC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (OTC:TRBAA)  and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).

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